1 Kings, 10
1. The queen of Sheba heard of Solomon's fame and came to test him with difficult questions.
2. She arrived in Jerusalem with a very large retinue, with camels laden with spices and an immense quantity of gold and precious stones. Having reached Solomon, she discussed with him everything that she had in mind,
3. and Solomon had an answer for all her questions; not one of them was too obscure for the king to answer for her.
4. When the queen of Sheba saw how very wise Solomon was, the palace which he had built,
5. the food at his table, the accommodation for his officials, the organisation of his staff and the way they were dressed, his cupbearers, and the burnt offerings which he presented in the Temple of Yahweh, it left her breathless,
6. and she said to the king, 'The report I heard in my own country about your wisdom in handling your affairs was true then!
7. Until I came and saw for myself, I did not believe the reports, but clearly I was told less than half: for wisdom and prosperity, you surpass what was reported to me.
8. How fortunate your wives are! How fortunate these courtiers of yours, continually in attendance on you and listening to your wisdom!
9. Blessed be Yahweh your God who has shown you his favour by setting you on the throne of Israel! Because of Yahweh's everlasting love for Israel, he has made you king to administer law and justice.'
10. And she presented the king with a hundred and twenty talents of gold and great quantities of spices and precious stones; no such wealth of spices ever came again as those which the queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon.
11. Similarly, Hiram's fleet, which brought the gold from Ophir, also brought back great cargoes of almug timber and precious stones.
12. Of the almug timber the king made supports for the Temple of Yahweh and for the royal palace, and harps and lyres for the musicians; no more of this almug timber has since come or been seen to this day.
13. And King Solomon, in his turn, presented the queen of Sheba with everything that she expressed a wish for, besides those presents which he gave her with a munificence worthy of King Solomon. After which, she went home to her own country, she and her servants.
14. The weight of gold received annually by Solomon amounted to six hundred and sixty-six talents of gold,
15. besides what tolls and foreign trade, as well as everything the Arab kings and the provincial governors brought in.
16. King Solomon made two hundred great shields of beaten gold, six hundred shekels of gold going into one shield;
17. also three hundred small shields of beaten gold, three mina of gold going into one shield; and the king put these into the House of the Forest of Lebanon.
18. The king also made a great ivory throne which he overlaid with refined gold.
19. The throne had six steps, a back with a rounded top, and arms on each side of the seat; two lions stood beside the arms,
20. and twelve lions stood on each side of the six steps. Nothing like it has ever been made in any other kingdom.
21. All King Solomon's drinking vessels were of gold, and all the plate in the House of the Forest of Lebanon was of pure gold; silver was little thought of in Solomon's days,
22. since the king had a fleet of Tarshish at sea with Hiram's fleet, and once every three years the fleet of Tarshish would come back laden with gold and silver, ivory, apes and baboons.
23. For riches and for wisdom, King Solomon surpassed all kings on earth,
24. and the whole world consulted Solomon to hear the wisdom which God had implanted in his heart;
25. and everyone would bring a present with him: things made of silver, things made of gold, robes, armour, spices, horses and mules; and this went on year after year.
26. Solomon then built up a force of chariots and cavalry; he had one thousand four hundred chariots and twelve thousand horses, these he stationed in the chariot towns and near the king in Jerusalem.
27. In Jerusalem the king made silver as common as stones, and cedar wood as plentiful as sycamore in the lowlands.
28. Solomon's horses were imported from Muzur and Cilicia. The king's dealers acquired them from Cilicia at the prevailing price.
29. A chariot was imported from Egypt for six hundred silver shekels and a horse from Cilicia for a hundred and fifty. They also supplied the Hittite and Aramaean kings, who all used them as middlemen.